Teenage dating violence can range from simple verbal abuse to more severe physical, emotional, and sexual abuses. While girls, most of the time, are victims, guys are also not spared. What makes the issue a very prominent one is the fact that only a handful of the victims talk about it, reaching out for help. The ratio is really worrisome and the surge of violence is on the high. Before looking into how you can handle this, here is a short glimpse of what exactly causes the violence and why the victim still prefers to be in the relationship…
Dating Violence – The Triggers
The root cause of a dating abuse could stem from a wide range of factors including:
- A poor relationship with parents
- A bad relationship between parents
- Low self confidence and self esteem levels
- Previous history of denials
- Peer ground non-acceptance
- Worried about their physical looks
- Childhood history of sexual trauma
- Emotionally disturbed childhood
Depending on the nature of the trigger and the intensity of its effect on the assailant, the degree of violence he/she launches on the victim varies.
Why Do Victims Still Prefer To Stay In An Abusive Relationship?
While quitting the relationship is the obvious solution, teens still hang on to an abusive relationship due to the following a factors…
- The Need To Be Loved: All of us love to be loved. The victim, in certain cases, might staunchly believe that the assailant’s acts are ways of depicting love. This false belief encourages them to stay in the relation.
- The Belief That Partner Will Change: Many a time, teens feel that the abusive partner will change with time, but alas….
- The Oath: The funny thing here is that assailants are quick witted enough to make their partners believe that they will not repeat the instances. They even fake oaths and apologize, only to repeat…
Some of the other reasons include:
- The confusion of newly dating
- The pretension that violence does not exist
- The victim feeling that he/she is responsible for his/her partner’s behavior
- The fear that the assailant might retaliate if the victim quits the relationship
Dealing with Teenage Dating Violence
Teenage violence, akin to other abuses, is not acceptable. Everyone deserves to be happy and safe – physically, sexually, and emotionally – while being in a relationship. Here are a few things that you can do if you are in an abusive teen relation or if you know someone who is in a similar situation…
When You Are With Your Abusive Partner
- Never stay alone with an abusive partner.
- If you are staying visiting a party or enjoying an event with your partner, then choose to include a friend with you.
- Never travel alone.
- Always inform a reliable person on wherever you are with your partner. Keep the person updated on your whereabouts.
Ending The Relationship And Managing The Aftermath
Breakup is the best solution to end a relation with an violent partner, but just be very careful as the partner could harm you. Here are some effective tips on how you can end an abusive teen relationship:
- Talk to your partner about the breakup, but in the presence of friends, and when the partner is in his ‘normal’ state of being.
- Write down a letter citing various reasons of why you want to leave the relationship. Handover one copy to the person and keep one with your for future reference.
- A dominant partner makes your breakup decision tough. So, ensure that you have a strong supporting network to be with you.
- Install your safety plans before breaking up to shield yourself.
- Always travel with your friends and family till the time your partner is able to calm down.
- Even if you are at home and your “ex” wants to visit you, make sure you are in the company of your family or friends.
If you still feel you are not able to manage this, then do call up a professional organization to help you and your partner.
It is, unarguably, a daunting task to deal with teen dating violence. While teen relationships are immature and not advisable, if you are in one, then please do inform your parents that you are in a relationship. Stay safe!